After CBS used the tagline Then Now Forever during the Super Bowl, one day later, WWE applied for the trademark to protect a phrase they've used since 2012.
WWE filed for the trademark of the phrase "Then Now Forever" on February 4, 2019, one less than 24 hours after it was used by CBS. The television broadcast network had used it during their Superbowl coverage the previous day and WWE was likely shocked, leading to them quickly filing for the trademark since the wrestling and entertainment company had been promoting that phrase on nearly every television opening over the last seven years.
The trademark filing notes WWE is applying for usage in good and services, specifically, "...shows about professional wrestling; entertainment services, namely, the production and exhibition of professional wrestling events rendered live and through broadcast media including television, and via the internet or commercial online service; providing wrestling news and wrestling information via a global computer network"
What This Means
This must have felt like a big oops for WWE who is very careful to trademark every phrase and saying they plan to use or do use on WWE programming. If it's going to be part of the show or a character, Vince and company do not want anyone else using it. Then Now Forever has been a staple of Raw and SmackDown Live, along with every pay-per-view opening montage for as long as most fans can remember.
One can only imagine what was going through Vince's mind when he saw that phrase or someone relayed the message CBS had just used it.
Likely as a result of the potential word WWE would trademark the and possible blowback on social media from WWE fans, it didn't take long for CBS to change the phrase to Then Now Always.